I would like to personally thank you for your purchase of the Wells Audio Commander preamplifier. We know that you have many choices when it comes to your personal electronics and we deeply appreciate your choice of a Wells Audio product.

Please read the instructions carefully and completely before attempting to operate the unit. We recommend that you save this manual and the original packaging for future use.


To activate the warranty, fill out the included warranty card fully and send in within 30 days of purchase.


WARNING! To reduce the risk of fire or electric shock, do not expose the unit to rain or moisture.

CAUTION: To prevent electric shock do not use this polarized AC plug with an extension cord, receptacle or other outlet unless the blades can be fully inserted to prevent blade exposure. To reduce the risk of fire or electric shock do not remove cover. Please refer to an authorized dealer or to Wells Audio for qualified service personnel only.

The lightning flash with arrowhead symbol is intended to alert the user to the presence of uninsulated “dangerous voltage” within the product's enclosure that may be of sufficient magnitude to constitute a risk of an electric shock to persons.

This symbol is intended to alert the user to the presence of important operating and maintenance (servicing) instructions in the literature accompanying the unit.


The packaging for the Commander preamplifier is simple, elegant and effective in protecting the Commander during shipping. To remove the amplifier from it's packing, simply open the box, remove the preamplifier and its foam end caps, and set it on a firm, flat, stabile surface, and then remove the foam end caps.. At this point we recommend that you check the preamplifier carefully for any damage that may have occurred during shipping. Contact Wells Audio immediately if any damage is found.

It is important to keep all of the original custom packaging materials for any future need you might have to ship the preamplifier. Shipping the Commander preamplifier in any packaging other than the original packaging materials could result in voiding of the warranty repair coverage. The Commander is shipped with the tubes stored in 5 white boxes imbedded in the foam endcaps along with the remote control. This is done to further attempt to avoid damage occurring during shipping. The boxes are labelled V1-V4 and “magic eye”. At this point remove the lid to the preamplifier by removing the series of phillips screws around the edges of the lid. Once inside the tube bases are clearly seen and labelled on the circuit board V1-V4. Carefully insert the appropriate tubes in their sockets paying particular attention to install them without damage to the sockets. The “magic eye” tube installs in the tube socket in the front behind the round center window of the front panel. Replace the lid and get ready to enjoy your music system as never before.


The unit should be connected to an AC power source of the correctly rated voltage. Never remove or modify the grounding feature of the connected AC power cord. Never expose the AC cord to excess heat or flame. The AC cord should fit firmly and securely into the chosen AC receptacle.

The unit should not be operated near water. If the unit is exposed to liquids serious damage can occur. Immediately shut the unit off and disconnect from the power source.

Make certain that the unit has proper ventilation during operation. Never block the slots located at the top of the unit and do not place the unit in a confined space during operation. These actions may result in damage to the unit due to overheating.

Never operate the unit with the cover off. Do not touch any internal parts. Damage to the unit may occur and serious injury or death may also result.


Do not use any cleaning products on your Wells Audio product. Instead, use a clean, non-abrasive cloth with clear water.

A proper break-in period is necessary before the unit will sound it's best. This allows for the establishment of of the cleanest conducting pathways and for the internal components of the unit to stabilize at their proper operating parameters. This is accomplished by simply playing music through the unit for a period of about 500 hours.


This manual shall serve as the operation manual for the Commander, Commander Level II and the Commander Level III preamplifiers. The Commander models are an unbalanced tube circuit design using 4 12BH7 tubes. the Commander has a single gain stage employing 2 12BH7s and the remaining two 12BH7s are for the unique polarity flip function. The Commander is a revolutionary new design employing a number of remarkable technical highlights which are described in further detail in the Commander page of the website.



The power button is located on the front left side on the front face plate. It will be labelled "POWER". To turn the power on push the switch in until it locks. The switch will be illuminated by an internal blue LED. It will blink on and off for approximately 90 seconds (this is the soft start mechanism) before going to a solid blue.  When the LED is a solid blue this indicates that the Commander is ready for operation. From left to right the remaining buttons are labelled Mute (to mute sound), Polarity (this is the polarity flip function), H/T ( home theater bypass), Tape (tape loop), Aux 3 (line level input), Aux 2 (line level input), XLR (XLR input), Vol.+ (volume increase), Vol.- (volume decrease).


From left to right the remaining buttons are labelled Mute (to mute sound), Polarity (this is the polarity flip function. just a note, there is approximately a 6 second delay when the polarity flip function is activated. Because dual triode tubes are used to flip the polarity rather than transformers or relays the 2 different signal pathways through the tubes. One path uses 120 volt while the other path is at 200 volts. Without the 6 second delay to charge the output coupling caps to buffer the large voltage increase catastrophic damage can occur to the preamplifier), H/T ( home theater bypass), Tape (tape loop), Aux 3 (line level input), Aux 2 (line level input), XLR (XLR input), Vol.+ (volume increase), Vol.- (volume decrease). On the Commander and Commander Level II there is an a “Magic Eye” tube located in the round window in the center of the front panel which illuminates at turn on. This tube will indicate volume increase and decrease by way of a series of green bars that sequencially illuminate and go dark as volume is increased and decreased.


While facing the rear panel of the Commander on the left side are the inputs. All inputs have been clearly labelled. Located immediately to the right of the inputs will be a pair of fixed outputs followed by 2 pair of variable outputs and last a pair of XLR variable outputs. The left channel connections are on the top row and the right channel connections are on the bottom row of connectors.  On the far right of the back panel will be located the detachable IEC connector for 115 volt AC power in. Connect your favorite power cord to this connector and then to the wall power to power the Commander.


The Majestic has been supplied with a beautiful high quality solid aluminum remote control. The remote control has 9 buttons that control volume up and down, mute, polarity flip and the 5 different inputs. Batteries are supplied with the remote at purchase. Batteries are CR2025 button batteries. CR2032 batteries can be used as a substitute.


  • Gain 16db

  • Frequency response +0/-0.1db from 2Hz to 20kHz

  • Noise -92 db, 35uv wide band

  • Total Harmonic Distortion (THD): at 1k or at 20k 1.5v out = .05%

  • Max Output = > 10v

  • Channel Separation = 82db at 1kHz

  • Input Impedance: 25k Ohms nominal

  • Output Impedance = 200 Ohms

  • Tube complement is 4 12BH7 tubes (2 for gain stage, 2 for polarity flip circuit)


Wells Audio warrants to the original purchaser that each Wells Audio product is free of manufacturing defects for a period of three (3) years from the date of purchase from an authorized agent of Wells Audio. The warranty is only valid once the enclosed warranty card is fully completed and returned to Wells Audio within thirty (30) days of the purchase date. 

For the complete limited warranty, see http://www.wellsaudio.com/limited-warranty/.

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